C&WC Boiler Explosion- 1948

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I am seeking information on the explosion of a locomotive boiler on the Charleston and Western Carolina which occurred at Clarks Hill, SC in 1948. The locomotive was said to be an ex-ACL unit sold to the C&WC.

-- Riley Kinney (csx333@yahoo.com), September 25, 2001


I have a copy of the C&WC's accident report on this incident. Here are the details: On November 18, 1948, at 10:06 a.m., near Clarks Hill, SC, the boiler of locomotive 853 exploded while the locomotive was handling eastbound freight train No. 94 at an estimated speed of 25-30 mph. The engineer was killed, the fireman so severely injured that he died a few minutes after reaching the hospital and the head- brakeman was severely injured. Train No. 94 had left Spartansburg, SC enroute to Augusta, GA at 2:50 a.m. with locomotives 812 and 853. Both locomotives took on coal and water at Laurens, SC. Tonnage was reduced at Laurens (Irby Yard) and locomotive 812 was set out, the train departing with 853 at 6:15 a.m. Locomotive 853 took water at Maxwell Yard and at McCormick. It departed McCormick with 25 loads, 11 empties and a caboose at 9:27 a.m. At the time of the explosion, train was moving on a 6 degree curve to the left and was on an ascending 0.84 per cent grade at a point 1620 feet west of the depot at Clarks Hill. The cause of the explosion was determined to be overheating other the boiler's crown sheet due to low water.

-- William E. Griffin, Jr. (Griffinwejr@aol.com), July 20, 2003.

C&WC 853 was ex-Clinchfield 405 which had be purchased by the C&WC in 1943.

Bob Hanson

-- Robert H. Hanson (RHanson669@aol.com), September 25, 2001.

I can't verify that the locomotive was ex-ACL, but on November 18 1948 there was a boiler explosion at Clarks Hill involving engine C&WC 853.

-- Harry Bundy (Y6B@aol.com), September 25, 2001.

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